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in some part of the State ; and sometimes nearly all the series were represented in a single district. Many of the Superintendents complained of this diversity of text-books as the chief obstacle to the advancement of the schools. Since then, however, the Legislature has adopted the principle of State uniformity, and a uniform series of text-books has been selected, and very generally introduced in the State. These books were adopted for four years from December 1, 1873, by vote of the County Superintendents. Every district failing to use them forfeits its proportion of school money.
One School Institute was held in the State during 1873.
From the reports of County Superintendents, it appears that there is not a single school library in the State, and that no school is thoroughly supplied with proper apparatus. A blackboard and some chalk crayons constitute the entire apparatus of the ordinary country school. The more pretentious city schools have a few wall maps and charts, and, though very rarely, globes.
The Common School Fund, resulting from the sale of land grants, and from other sources, amounts to about $500,000. It is under the management of a Board of Commissioners, consisting of the Governor, Secretary of State, and State Treasurer. County and district taxes are also levied for school purposes.
LEGISLATION DURING 1874. The State Board of Education met in May, and adopted, for the government of the public schools and school officers in the State, a series of rules and regulations, of which the following are the more important:
First. The State Superintendent can grant certificates to teachers only upon appeal from County Superintendents, on the ground of injustice having been done the applicant. In any case of sufficient importance, the State Superintendent may bring the matter before the Board of Education.
Second. Only two grades of certificates can be issued by County Superintendents. Examinations must be conducted, as far as possible, in writing.
Third. An applicant for a teacher's certificate, refused in one county, cannot be granted a certificate in another county, until after the expiration of three months.
Fourth. Children under eight years of age must not be kept in school longer than four hours per day.
Fifth. Whenever the unexcused absences of any pupil during any one term shall amount in the aggregate to seven days, the delinquent shall be expelled from school, if the Superintendent so orders.
In a supplemental report issued in 1874, the State Superintendent, after urging, among other things, that increased pay be given the County Superintendents, says:
Among the principal and most urgent needs of the school system of Oregon are the following:
First. A sufficient increase of school funds to enable every district in the State to maintain a free school for six months, or longer, during each year.
Second. Some means by which a larger and more regular attendance upon our public schools may be secured.
Third. Better facilities for training teachers and fitting them for their calling. EDUCATIONAL STATISTICS.
1873–74. Amount apportioned to districts at last apportionment.... $49,454 17 Amount of district tax levied and collected............. $71, 152 04 Amount paid teachers from district tax......
$28,865 32 Amount paid teachers from rate-bill and subscriptions.... $45,640 38 Amount paid teachers from county funds.............. $80,437 85 Amount of incidental expenses....................... $35,977 651 Amount paid for building school-houses..... .... $2,352 45 Value of school-houses.... .............
.... $236,001 10 Value of other school property ........ ....... $76,238 89 Number of districts reporting......
... 642 Number of legal voters reported...
21,547 Number of children of school age-males, 19,391.; females, 18,049.......
37,440 Increase over last year.............................. Average attendance reported.......
15,329 Number of quarters school was taught.......
1,002 Average number of quarters school was taught, per district. Number of teachers reported............ .........
607 Average pay of male teachers per month............... $47 54 Average pay of female teachers per month.......
JAMES PYLE WICKERSHAM, LL.D., State Superintendent of Public Instruction of Pennsylvania, was born in Newlin, Chester County, March 5, 1825, and is descended from a long line of distinguished Quaker ancestry. He early exhibited a remarkable fondness for reading, which increased with his years. He was educated in the common school and the Unionville Academy. When only sixteen years old he began teaching in the latter institution. So successful was he that at twenty he had made a wide reputation as an instructor. In 1845 he became Principal of the Marietta Academy. He was subsequently elected County Superintendent of Lancaster County, and founded the Normal School Institute at Millersville, out of which grew the first Normal School and the Normal School System of Pennsylvania. In 1856 he was elected Principal of this school, which position he held until appointed in 1866 State Superintendent of Common Schools by Governor Curtin. This office he has now held for nearly three terms, or nine years, having been twice reappointed by Governor Geary, and unanimously confirmed by the Senate. Under his administration the school affairs of Pennsylvania have made rapid progress. Mr. Wickersham was elected President of the National Superintendents' Association in 1869, and has filled many other honorary positions. He took an active part in raising troops for the war, commanded a regiment himself for some time, has written largely for the press and periodicals, and published two volumes entitled, “ School Economy,” and “Methods of Instruction.” Since 1870 he has edited The Pennsylvania School Journal. Mr. Wickersham never used liquor or tobacco in any form, and has never been sick a day in his life.
EDUCATION IN THE PAST. WILLIAM PENN's charter, or framework of government, provided that the Governor and Provincial Council should erect and direct all public schools in Pennsylvania Trustees and managers were named and appointed for such schools in 1752. The Provisional Constitution, framed in 1776, provided for the establishment of a school in each county. Ten years later the proceeds of sixty thousand acres of public lands were appropriated for the use of public schools.
In 1819 the first real school law was passed. It provided for the free education of all children between five and twelve years of age, whose parents were unable to pay for their schooling. In 1831 a bill was passed looking to the general education of all. classes. Supplementary acts followed during the four succeeding years. One authorized the common school fund, and made provision for the distribution of its income. Another provided free education for all in the State between the ages of six and twenty-one years.
PRESENT SCHOOL SYSTEM. This act, passed in 1834, was really the foundation of the present school system, which embraces the following features :
The State Superintendent of Instruction is appointed by the Governor, with the consent of the Senate, holds the position for three years (four years under the Constitution of 1873), and appoints his subordinate officers. The present force in the Department consists of one Superintendent, two deputies, three clerks, and one messenger. The Superintendent is Hon. J. P. Wickersham, LL.D., whose address is Harrisburg. His deputies are Henry Houck and R. Curry.
County Superintendents, of which there are sixty-five, are elected by the school directors of their respective counties. Their duties are to visit all the schools within their jurisdiction, examine teachers, and report annually to the State Superintendent. Their salaries are fixed by the Directors and paid by the State Superintendent, who fills vacancies in office.
There are twenty-one city and borough Superintendents elected in like manner. The aggregate salaries of the entire eighty-six Superintendents for 1874 was $108,000.
The District Directors number six for each district and are elected, two each year, by the people. They are vested with the power of levying and collecting taxes, building and furnishing school-houses, employing and paying teachers, and selecting text-books, and managing the schools generally. The courts have power to remove directors for the non-performance of duty, and the State Superintendent can refuse to pay a district its quota of the annual State appropriation if the directors do not keep the schools open according to law.
There are four different kinds of teachers' certificates in Pennsylvania, viz. :
First. The “State Certificate,” given by the Board of Examiners of the State Normal Schools, and permanently good all over the State.
Second. The “ Permanent Certificate,” given by the State Superintendent to teachers holding professional certificates, and good for one year in every county.
Third. The “ Professional Certificate,” given for the term of the County Superintendent granting it, and good in the county for one year thereafter.
Fourth. The “Provisional Certificate," given by the County Superintendent, and good for only one year in the county.
In his last report, the State Superintendent of Public Instruction says: “The educational growth of the State has been truly wonderful since 1867, probably exceeding that of any other State in the Union."
The taxes levied and collected for school purposes throughout the State last year amounted to over eight millions of dollars.
The School Fund proper consists of an annual State appropriation, together with local taxes and fines, in special cases,
Fifteen thousand and three persons received certificates to teach during 1873.
There are twelve thousand one hundred and thirty-seven school-houses in the State.
Overfield is the only district in the State which has not now in operation a system of common schools.
Pennsylvania cannot boast of her school-houses. Of the twelve thousand one hundred and thirty-seven only one thousand two hundred and one are reported as being suitably improved, that is, first-class in all respects, and five thousand four hundred and seventy-five are badly ventilated.
The school age is between six and twenty-one years. It is estimated that there are three hundred thousand children in the State of the requisite age, who do not, in any one year, attend school.
The free school system of Philadelphia, now in existence for more than a half century, embraces four hundred and twentyfive school-houses, one thousand seven hundred and forty-two teachers, one hundred and forty-eight thousand five hundred and eleven pupils, and, excluding the scholars of the night schools, an average attendance of seventy-two thousand and twenty-five.
Teachers' Institutes were held in every county of the State, and were attended by some twelve thousand teachers during 1873. ,
There are at the present time eight Normal Schools in suc